By Annette Dashofy
One of the best bits of advice I ever received as a writer was to marry someone with good health insurance.
But then the economy tanked. Last week, my supportive husband—he of the steady employment and decent health insurance—had his job phased out from under him.
It came as no surprise. We smelled hints of impending doom as early as last fall. This was followed by the stench of major lay-offs around the holidays. When the ax finally fell, it was almost a relief.
But that relief was short-lived. We’ve launched into what I can only term as the five stages of grief. Over the weekend, it was easy to live in denial. He went fishing. I visited some friends. It was all stuff we’d already planned to do. But when Monday rolled around and he had nowhere to go…
I’d have to say we’ve reached the anger phase. After being at that job for 32 years, the idea of pounding the pavement, filling out applications, and creating a resume are daunting. Not to mention giving up all the hard-earned vacation and sick days he’d accumulated.
“Get that book published,” he tells me.
I’m trying. I’m trying!
In the meantime, I’m selling Avon. (Mother’s Day is coming. We’ve got some great gift ideas at reasonable prices!)
Sorry. I slip into sales mode without warning these days. It will be great practice for when I have a book to sell. (Please, God.)
Is desperation one of the stages of grief? I don’t think so. Maybe it should be.
I suspect this is the hardest part of it. We don’t know yet how much we’ll be collecting in unemployment compensation. And we don’t know how much we’ll have to pay for that health insurance. I’m still researching new plans and coverages. It’s scary.
Yet in the midst of it all, I’m trying to hammer out my third draft of my wip with the goal of having it ready to pitch at the Pennwriters Conference in less than a month. Nothing like a little bit of distraction when you need to focus on perfecting a 90,000 word manuscript.
So misery loves company. Anyone care to share your employment/unemployment stories? I’m especially looking for those that provide hope. But if you want to vent, rant, or whine, hey, have at it.